The Ruby Rogues

The Ruby Rogues podcast is a panel discussion about topics relating to programming, careers, community, and Ruby. We release a conversation with notable programmers and Rubyists each week to help programmers advance in their careers and skills.

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RR 293 Packaging Ruby with Nell Shamrell-Harrington


RR 293 Packaging Ruby with Nell Shamrell-Harrington

On today’s episode, Charles Max Wood and Jerome Hardaway discuss Packaging Ruby with Nell Shamrell-Harrington. Nell is an expert Software Development Engineer at Chef Software. Tune in to learn how you can provide viable packaging solutions!

Packaging Ruby

Nell used to host applications on cloud providers. People get to use those apps only when they visit their website.

When she worked for Chef, however, she created software that people can run on their own hardware. That’s what packaging means to her—making an artifact or gem that someone can use on their own workstations. An example is Ruby Gems, self-contained programs which anyone with a Ruby can install and run.

Check Episode 291 for more information on Ruby Gems.

Concerns on Security

Knowing who and where the package is from is also something to consider when purchasing software. Nell brings up certain concerns with regards to packaging and downloading them.

For this, Charles recalls his previous work experience at Public Engines. He used to work with government data and had certain restrictions in dealing with them. It made him wary of security issues later on.

Perfect Packaging Solution

There can be a number of reasons for packaging applications in a specific way. It varies depending on the server and type of environment. Nell identifies this with her experience at Chef.

Some of their customers worked in air-gapped environments. Their hardware is secured from outside internet connection. To provide viable solutions for them, Chef needs to tailor fit a package that would suit the type of environment they’re in.

To hear about Packaging Ruby with Nell Shamrell-Harrington, download and listen to the entire episode. Nell would love to hear from you. Follow her on Twitter @nellshamrell, and she’ll be happy to answer your tweets or DMs.

If you’re short on time, here are the highlights of Packaging Ruby with Nell Shamrell-Harrington:

What exactly is Ruby Packaging? ([1:26])

Knowing the perfect packaging application? ([4:17])

How many packaging systems are there?  ([6:28])

What Nell did when she first learned Ruby? ([7:56])

One of the challenges encountered and her solution? ([9:06])

Nell’s TA Experience at the University of Washington? ([10:29])

Taking responsibility over open source contributions? ([11:31])

How to make sure on the package’s security? ([14:10])

The best yet imperfect solution to assuring security? ([16:15])

Identifying the weakness in the system? ([16:15])

Process in creating a package? ([19:07])

Brief background of Habitat (Chef product)? ([20:16])

Best package convention to follow? ([24:15])

The importance of software licenses? ([37:34])

Why web developers should care about software packaging? ([43:29])

Picks:

Google University by John Washam (Jerome)

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (Charles and Nell)

Trader Joe’s Irish Breakfast Tea (Nell)

Scrub Daddy Sponge (Nell)

This episode is sponsored by

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